Slouchy Hobo Bag

Slouchy Hobo Bag

Every wanted to know how to make a hobo bag? You're in luck! We have got step by step instructions for making a slouchy hobo bag of your own!

What you need

Sewing Machine



(Figure 1)

here’s the “pattern” i used. i tend to just cut…i really have no rhyme or reason to my shapes and patterns. this one happens to be 8″ high. you will cut 2 with the interior fabric and 2 with the exterior fabric


(Figure 2)

here are all the pieces. the ones on the far left are key…they will be attached to the zipper and you will start with those. you then have the body of the purse..interior and exterior…and then you have 2 pieces to create the strap for your shoulder at the bottom of the picture.



(Figure 3,4)
you will sandwich the zipper between one zipper piece of each the interior and exterior. make sure the top of the zipper (outside face) faces the good side of the exterior fabric…just like in this picture. you may want to unzip the zipper to make this process easier. oh and cut the zipper to the length that you want for the opening. make sure to sew at the end of where you cut so that if you accidentally unzip it all the dont waste an entirely good zipper…this has happened to me… the shorter the zipper the smaller and scrunchier the purse.. mine is about 12″ or so.

(Figure 5)
his is what it will look like once you finish both sides and both interior and exterior. this picture shows only the interior side.


(Figure 6 )
then take one of the interior body pieces and pin in place with pleats. i start from the middle of each piece (zipper piece and interior body) and pin them to keep them centered…then i pleat and them accordingly so that once you reach the end where it curves that it will line up with the end of your zipper piece. which by the way…the zipper piece should be just a tad longer on either side of the length of your zipper


(Figure 7)

do this to both interior body sides.


(Figure 8)
this is what it should look like. this is the inside of your purse.


(Figure 9)
this is what it should look like on the other side.


(Figure 10)
now you want to put the good sides of the interior body pieces together and sew them…like so. make sure you leave a space..this is where you will turn your purse inside out at the end

(Figure 11)
now you will do the same to the exterior fabric. pin and pleat and sew.

(Figure 12)
this is how it should look when you’re done with both sides… this is fun!!

fold it in half and this is what you can see your purse come together now

(Figure 14)
open it back up and face the good sides of the exterior together and sew..this time don’t leave a space like the interior pieces. make sure before you do this step.. unzip the purse more than half way so it’s easier to turn inside out.

(Figure 15)
now where you left the space…turn the entire purse inside out.


(Figure 16-17)
and this is what you get when you turn your purse exterior side outside. you will have holes on either side of the purse unfinished for your strap.

(Figure 18)
put one side of your strap in the hole and turn this portion of the purse inside out so you can sew it easier

(Figure 19)
cut off the excess so it’s even

(Figure 20)
the other side will be split open so it will be a little more tough. sew in place like the picture

(Figure 21)
and basically wrap your purse around the strap and sew. make sure the zipper ends are lined up and close to eachother

(Figure 22)
cut off excess and this is what both insides should look like for the strap.

(Figure 23)

that’s it! it took me about 4 patterns to get this right. this purse took me about 3 hours to make. I added embellishments. I recommend doing that before you sew the exterior body pieces together. I also added a pocket.

This project was contributed by


  1. Nice! This would be a good project for recycling fabric salvaged from old jeans or khakis or you could also use new upholstry fabrics & line with pretty (woven) shirt fabric — lots of possibilities!

  2. I love it! Thanks for the tutorial.

  3. I hope to make this soon this is just too cute.

  4. Thanks for the pattern. My daughter and I are really into cute bags and purses. I’ve made several in the last few weeks. They are so much fun to make. Can’t wait until I make this one!

  5. The bag’s really cute, but halfway through the directions had me lost and I ended up doing it my own way… now I have a cute purse, but not what I was looking forr..

  6. Weell, thats dandy

  7. Great & fun tutorial I`m happy that young people are getting into sewing i`m being sewing since i was twelve and still going. Keep the good work. Romi.

  8. What are the approximate dimensions of the finished purse? Would you be able to post a picture holding the finished purse on your shoulder or even in your hand so I can get a reference of the size? Thanks so much 🙂

  9. wow this is the best idea ,i am going to make this for my sister in her birthday!

  10. I love handbags and this one is going to be one of my favourite – Great instructions & pics – one can really not go wrong. Thanks

  11. this is going to be one of my first projects on my sewing machine. i love it!

  12. this idea seemed SO cute!!!!!!!!! i made one andit was so easy

  13. Australian_gymnast says

    Love it! It looks so good!! A great Fasion statement :o)

  14. This bag looks amazing to make, would love to make it but don’t know much sewing mach. to make it. But it is still an amazing bag and I love it, plus the idea also, so many ways to make something like this..

  15. Adorable!

  16. that looks so cool 5 star

  17. that looks so cool 5 star

  18. im only 12 and i made one turned out great!

  19. i just finished making it! it wasn’t to hard and it looks great!

  20. craftygreengirl says

    Great tutorial, thanks!

  21. how long are the zipper pieces supposed to be? and how long should the strap be?

  22. Awesome… I’m gng to go to the store, buy some cute fabric and make one right away…

  23. Love this idea…..I had a few complications at first since I’m new to sewing with the zipper and how to connect the body of the bag to the it. Basically, I finally discovered that I needed to cut my zipper down. But all in all, I’m a hobo-pro!!!

  24. I think it’s a good tutorial. Love the bag. May I make a suggestion. I think the picture’s should be put along with the instructions where you have a reference to pic number. Other then that great directions.

  25. Coolies! 🙂

  26. Damn good idea will try this one very soon

  27. I haven’t tried it yet, but it looks very cute!

  28. thankyou soo much for this tutorial!! i received such high marks in my project thank you once again

  29. Excellent instructions and an excellent bag!
    Anyone who doesn’t get it or thinks it’s hard is daft, ignore them. This bag is fantastic and well worth the effort… thanks Tina!

  30. I really love this project. I am just learning how to sew and this is really simple and turns out great. I’ve made a few purses and a huge one that’s my diaper bag. I always get compliments on it and have had people offer to pay for them. Thanks!

  31. it look to plain for a bag its too much work!!

  32. katieislivinlife12 says

    I love this idea but I tried to make one… and i followed the directions very carefully and it didn’t turn out very good. It looks like a rag! LOL Oh well ill try again>
    Thax anyway 🙂

  33. Its a LOT of work, but it came out looking fabulous!

  34. YAY! good pattern! i love purses but i’m a total cheapo at heart. Thanks for making a fun, easy alternative!

  35. You are super talented! I love to sew and this is the perfect project for me. THANX!!!!!

  36. billiegirl25 says

    Uber cute, haven’t ried it, but I can’t wait! Making 4 for my friends to talk them into Bonnaroo! Thanks a bunch!

  37. Great idea!

  38. I really liked the final outcome of the project, but this is definitely not a task for a novice. There are many details left out that only an experienced seamstress could fill in. I still loved the bag, and I’m quite impressed with the pattern over all.

  39. it was kind of challenging but it looked good

  40. I was looking for a bag pattern to make a bunch of friends for their graduation and this bag looks simple and awesome. Thanks for the tute.

  41. katieislivinlife12 says

    Awesome! im gonna try and make one what did you use 4 the pink stuff makes it look awesome

  42. this is so fetch and soooo fish (thats a good thing) i luv it its amazingly cute xXx

  43. thank you for the tutorial, my daughter saw a bag like this on ebay out of mario material. So now with your help I can make her one. Instructions and pictures were great.

  44. I have to try this! The tutorial makes it easier to diy.

  45. ilovehorses says

    Ok, i made the purse….. this ….. thing ………AWSOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    If i could go over 5 stars, I would!!!!!Thank u so much (again :*)


  47. ilovehorses says

    How big is the finished bag Love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  48. my purse is so cool! everyone at school said my purse was awesome! i love this purse so much!

  49. this was the coolest purse EVER! I advise anyone who thinks they can, to go for it and try. It was fun and turned out awesome. But if you try it, then I advise you to read the directions VERY carefully and study the pipctures given.

  50. Thanks for putting this up here! My bag turned out great!

  51. I loved the pattern so much I just made one for my self. I added Interfacing on my and it looks great. Thanks

  52. it is so cute! I want it! I know that I cant make it….but that is ok. I still think the idea is great! Maybe I will show my mom… 🙂

  53. its so awsome! i made mine up a bit but its sooo cute!

  54. thanx for makin it so clear best instructions ever although i dont think ill make it cos ive got a list of about 10 billion things to do but i will get round to it cos i love bags and been lookin for 1 like this for ages!! thanx!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  55. i’ve been looking for good photo instructions on how to attach a zipper in a lined bag, excellent instructions, thanks sweetie!!!

  56. awesome

  57. i loved it! im new at sewing so i made it out of an old sheet at first. came out AWSOME! so now i am going to make an army reverse one with green and pink camoflage. AWSOME! thanx so much!


  59. I’m almost done making this bag. The only thing I didn’t find easy to understand were the instructions to put on the handle. Great project, I love it.

  60. Thank you so much for this great pattern. I love the pictures. I am going to make each one of my granddaughters one. You are a very creative person. Thanks for sharing. Janis Peper

  61. this is fantastic!thanks for the clear instructions and’s absolutely beautiful!

  62. I love this bag i use it for everything. I didn’t find the instuctions too hard though.

  63. If i could go over 5 stars, I WOULD!!! This is the cutest ever!!! I have just the color in mind and a perfect pin to put on it!!! Thanx for the idea!!!:D

  64. i love it

  65. hi, tinafish here…glad everyone likes the bag. if you’re interested in my other works you can go here: thanks!!

  66. well i just finished my purse and it turned out just great!! 😀 so thnx for the effort in intructions and pics it really helped.

  67. Great bag, i’m a first time sewer and i easily understood the instructions. Found this pattern worked best with thicker material, i cut up some old khaki pants and used that for the exterior, great way to reduse and reuse as well!

  68. i love it!

  69. Love the pattern, can’t wait to make Christmas purses for me and my girls…(how about red, green or dark blue velvet with satin lining)??? Stay Creative!!!

  70. I love this tutorial! Very pro… I just made one but I made it way too long, good practice though! Thanks for keeping me up till 3:30 in the morning 🙂 hahah

  71. This has got to be the most detailed project on craftbits. I love it.

  72. omg i luv it! =]I made 2!! (young seamstress in the making)

  73. Oh!! Should be 5 stars! My bad – I didn’t click the right buttons! The pleats really make the bag! I particularly liked the detailed pictures of the pleats, the zipper facings and the handle placement. I also like the annotations on the pictures…

  74. The pleats really make the bag! I particularly liked the detailed pictures of the pleats, the zipper facings and the handle placement. I also like the annotations on the pictures. You could make a living by selling designs like this. A+

  75. Five stars baby!!!!!!!!!!! Loving the look!!!!
    xx Zoe (age 11)

  76. Cute but all the “figures” at the bottom makes it hard to read and understand.

  77. very cute

  78. this is soo good! I made this and it’s my favorite purse!

  79. This is perfect thanks for taking the time to put this out here to use

  80. You put a lot of work into the instructions and photos; you’ve done an amazing job! THANK YOU! oh.. lol and the pattern is great, too… if anyone has trouble: ask a experienced seamstress for help – don’t insult the crafter!!

  81. this is is the cutest purse EVER!!but it has a wierd name.

  82. Awesome! And you really helped out by pictures! 5 stars!!!!!

  83. instructions are a lil hard but its wicked cute when its done!

  84. thank god i have somethin to do with my day…pst. if you dont get it…its cause you cant sew…

  85. I love it! thanks for sharing!

  86. OMG!!! Luv it! =] I’m making 2! A good way to dress it up is to make or buy a pin, also, it looks really cute if you put trim on the top!

  87. This is VERY easy! Perfect! Luv it <3

  88. Hold on…It took you 4 patterns to make it! I only have enough fabric for one! *sigh*

  89. How do you pleat???

  90. I’m excited to try this project…

  91. Make it larger by increasing the size of your pattern

  92. how would you suggest making it larger?

  93. i have been SEARCHING for a bag just like this one and it looks just like i dreamed! thank you so much for the pattern, my purse looks fabulous!

  94. abit complicated.. but i’m soo gonna try! love it!

  95. it’s great i love
    the bage

  96. The purse is SO cute!

  97. Tinafish, i love your pattern I know you cut your pieces 8×20, how big did your bag turn out?

  98. i love this pattern. What dimentions should you cut the fabric and how big is the purse

  99. I love this pattern!!!!!!
    How do you pleat?

  100. great pattern with very good visuals….thanks

  101. well i think they were good inscuctions , but i reviesd the insructinons a little . also maybe this bag is not for u . but pleas dont make those rude comments you have here already . ( very good and cute bag !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  102. Im finally understanding the zipper attachment with a lining.

  103. i agree about the exterior instructions, but with a little hair pulling I figured it out and now have an awesome new bag!!!

  104. very poor instructions on how to put on the exterior

  105. just what I had been looking for!

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